April 10, 2008

HAVEN'T THE REALISTS DONE ENOUGH DAMAGE?:

Foreign policy: 2 camps seek McCain's ear (Elisabeth Bumiller and Larry Rohter, April 10, 2008, NY Times)

Senator John McCain has long made his decades of experience in foreign policy and national security the centerpiece of his political identity, and suggests he would bring to the White House a fully formed view of the world.

But now one component of the fractious Republican Party foreign policy establishment — the so-called pragmatists, some of whom have come to view the Iraq war or its execution as a mistake — is expressing concern that McCain might be coming under increased influence from a competing camp, the neoconservatives, whose thinking dominated President George W. Bush's first term and played a pivotal role in building the case for war.

The concerns have emerged in the weeks since McCain became his party's presumptive nominee and began more formally assembling a list of foreign policy advisers. Among those on the list are several prominent neoconservatives, including Robert Kagan, an author who helped write much of the foreign policy speech that McCain delivered in Los Angeles on March 26, in which he described himself as "a realistic idealist." Others include the security analyst Max Boot and a former United Nations ambassador, John Bolton.

Prominent members of the pragmatist group, often called realists, say they are also wary of the McCain campaign's chief foreign policy aide, Randy Scheunemann, who was a foreign policy adviser to former Senators Trent Lott and Bob Dole and who has longtime ties to neoconservatives. In 2002, Scheunemann was a founder of the hawkish Committee for the Liberation of Iraq and was an enthusiastic supporter of the Iraqi exile and Pentagon favorite, Ahmad Chalabi.


Given that the Iraq war is a function of their failure to remove Saddam in '91, the pragmatists ought to have the decency to shut up. Maintaining dictatorships so that we won't be bothered by messy new situations is a policy that is beneath the contempt of any decent party and should be left to the Democrats.

Posted by Orrin Judd at April 10, 2008 7:18 AM
Comments

Nicely stated OJ.

Posted by: Genecis at April 10, 2008 5:08 PM
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